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Families and Addiction

Triggers and emotional cravings relating to mental difficulties are very common for those of us in recovery during the holiday season. We previously discussed three different types of cravings individuals might face in addiction recovery, one of the most complex of these being emotional cravings. This week I want to dive deeper into the concept of emotional cravings and just how prominent they can be during the notoriously stressful holiday season.
Conversations about your sex addiction are almost always a daunting task, but the conversations take on even higher stakes when you're confessing your secret sins to your family members. Some sex addicts keep their taboo desires and habits hidden from their loved ones for years or even decades; while others, like myself, choose to go all in and tell their family only a few months into the madness of active addiction. The conversations about sex addiction are never easy, but in my opinion, they can be extremely helpful in creating a healthy, transparent space with the people you love most.
It's important to know how to identify the warning signs of addiction relapse when you have a loved one who is in recovery from addiction. There are some telltale signs that a person in recovery is moving toward an addiction relapse, even before they actually use drugs or drink again. When you are able to identify those signs, you may be able to help your loved one avoid relapsing and get his or her feet firmly planted back in recovery.
It can be difficult to stay sober over the holidays because they're so stressful. But family dynamics, crazy in-laws, and unfulfilled expectations don’t have to threaten your sobriety. Be proactive and have a plan for surviving the holidays in addiction recovery. You can make it through this season with your sobriety intact. Here are five tips to help you stay sober over the holidays and into 2018.
“I just want to be normal. I don’t know what it’s like,” cried a tear-soaked heroin addict during a tough-love intervention. Her cry came after about 15 minutes of being yelled at, belittled, and degraded in front of 1000 viewers, all in the name of tough love. My heart broke into pieces for her because I’ve been that woman. I wanted to reach through my screen, hug her and tell her how precious she is. Tough love for addicts doesn't work.
Some teetotalers abstain from alcohol because the have a family history of alcoholism. Gillian Jacobs, Hal Sparks, and Joe Biden are a few famous names that attribute their sobriety to teetotaling because of a family history of alcoholism. 
Can you stay sober at a wedding? I think so. Weddings can present a challenge for sober folks (Sobriety Becoming the New Norm). Here are some tips for staying sober during wedding season.
Love it or hate it, the holiday season always brings obligations and you have to handle holiday obligations in alcohol recovery. It can be tricky to navigate those obligations. For me, feeling overwhelmed is just as a big an alcoholism trigger as alcohol itself so I have to be careful in my alcohol recovery with regards to holiday obligations.. 
Talking to children about addiction and recovery may put recovering parents in a tough spot. Parents in early addiction recovery often struggle with explaining their drug or alcohol addiction to their children. Depending on their ages, some details of addiction are too graphic or complicated for children to understand. It’s important for the recovering parent to carefully consider the needs of the child. However, the parent's need for privacy during such a challenging and tumultuous process must be respected, too. Here are some suggestions to navigate talking to your kids about addiction and recovery.
You might want to consider how recovering alcoholics react to normal alcohol use, if, indeed, you choose to drink alcohol. If you have loved ones who are in alcoholism recovery, be aware that a recovering alcoholic's reaction to your alcohol consumption could change day by day. As I continuously grow and adapt to life around me, my tolerance for alcohol and sense of security evolve as well. I am my own best advocate for my sobriety, but I'm also the only one who truly knows where I stand in my recovery process. Here are some things for friends and family to keep in mind with regards to how recovering alcoholics react to normal alcohol use.